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Guest Post: Afghanistan - Newly Discovered Mineralogical Treasure House (Again)

Tyler Durden's picture


From John C.K. Daly of

Guest Post: Afghanistan - Newly Discovered Mineralogical Treasure House (Again)

As the U.S.-led Afghan campaign lurches into its second decade, the country’s vast untapped mineralogical resources are again emerging in the Western media, seemingly underpinning the benefits of International Security Assistance Force troops “staying the course” and defeating the insurgency, after which these resources can be tapped, both providing the administration of Afghan President Hamid Karzai with a source beyond drugs for reconstruction and Western companies who develop the reserves a handsome profit.

The latest discovery is that Afghanistan is rich in rare earth elements (RREs). China currently has a near monopoly on the global production of RREs, and the price for a ton of unprocessed ore has soared to a dizzying $100,000 a ton.

So, what’s wrong with this picture?

Western venture capitalists should consider the following points before whipping out their checkbooks to underwrite any mining projects.

First and most obvious, Afghanistan has been in a civil war for thirty years, with Western forces intervening only in the last decade. The country is torn by tribalism and religious divides and Karzai's administrative control is largely limited to the larger cities.  Mao Tse Tung in his 1947 work "The Present Situation and Our Tasks" wrote, “Concerning attacking cities, resolutely seize all enemy fortified points and cities that are weakly defended. At opportune moments, seize all enemy fortified points and cities defended with moderate strength, provided circumstances permit. As for all strongly defended enemy fortified points and cities, wait until conditions are ripe and then take them,” a strategy the Taliban are apparently following to the letter, unconcerned with election cycles and opinion polls. The Taliban know that they have time on their side – as one Taliban commander told a U.S. military officer, “you have the watches, we have the time.”

Secondly, the administration of Karzai is increasingly viewed by the Afghan population as illegitimate, foisted on them by foreign forces, and extremely corrupt to boot. During the August 2009 presidential election, Karzai, in an election reported by foreign observers as riven with fraud, received less than 50 percent of the popular vote, triggering a runoff. Two months later, after Karzai agreed to a runoff election, tentatively scheduled for 7 November, but five days later his main opponent Abdullah Abdullah withdrew and Afghan officials canceled the election, leaving Karzai in power for a second term, despite the provisions of the Afghan constitution, alienating many Afghans from democratic principles.

Third, Afghanistan’s rich mineral base has been known for a long time. Following disastrous December 1979 Soviet invasion, extensive Soviet exploration in Afghanistan produced detailed geological maps and reports that listed more than 1,400 mineral outcroppings, along with about 70 commercially viable deposits. The USSR subsequently committed more than $650 million for resource exploration and development in Afghanistan, which included a smelting complex for the Ainak deposit that was to have produced 1.5 million tons of copper per year. In the wake of the Soviet withdrawal a subsequent World Bank analysis projected that the Ainak copper production alone could eventually capture as much as 2 percent of the annual world market. Afghanistan’s Hajigak iron deposit, in the Hindu Kush mountain range west of Kabul, is assessed as one of the largest high-grade deposits in the world.

As for the recent announcement about gigantic deposits of rare-earth metals, including lanthanum, cerium and neodymium, being discovered in Afghanistan, it is worth bearing in mind that the U.S. geologists who surveyed the sites were airlifted by Black Hawk helicopters to the Khan Neshin Village in a desert area of Helmand Province, where they worked under military protection. If such deposits are to be developed, then given the lack of security forcing geologists to be airlifted to the site, then how is the mining infrastructure to be conveyed?

Fourthly, the stupendous rise in RRE ore prices has led to a frenzied search for deposits around the world, from Estonia to Mongolia, some of which will doubtless pan out. Given Afghanistan’s instability, why would an investor risk his capital there, especially when neighboring Central Asian nations like Mongolia represent a far more stable and investor-friendly environment? Mongolia recently signed off on a massive $7 billion mining project, allowing Rio Tinto and Ivanhoe Mines a majority 67 percent share.

While Afghanistan’s mineralogical potential is vast, the country’s crippling economic and insurgency problems remain, and it’s worth nothing here that despite the 2010 joint report by the Pentagon, the U.S. Geological Survey and U.S. Agency for International Development that Afghanistan possesses "previously unknown" and untapped mineral reserves worth up to $1 trillion, two-thirds of Afghanistan’s population live on less than $2 a day.

So, even though Afghan Ministry of Mines adviser Jalil Jumriany said of the RRE discoveries, “This will become the backbone of the Afghan economy,” the question, not only for foreign investors but the Afghans themselves remains, “qui bono?”

There are no clear answers emerging to this question from Kabul anytime soon.


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Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:46 | 1773919 prains
prains's picture

“This will become the backbone of the Afghan economy,” 


heroin, qui?

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:03 | 1774005 Fukushima Sam
Fukushima Sam's picture

Many countries are "rich" in rare earth elements, because they are not really that rare.  No surprise that Afghanistan is one of them.

What Afghanistan is really "rich" in is lack of environmental protections, resulting in the mining of the REEs to be super-profitable!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:46 | 1774495 zerozulu
zerozulu's picture

Stealing is the most lucrative business.

Mon, 03/26/2012 - 08:03 | 2290310 carlhenson
carlhenson's picture

Possibly, though do that only if you think you wouldn't get caught or else.

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Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:27 | 1774134 zerozam
zerozam's picture

Heroin is, and will be, the backbone of Afghan economy.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:28 | 1774137 porrannor
porrannor's picture

Call China to come and get it...

Sat, 12/03/2011 - 11:26 | 1941420 jaffa
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Fri, 12/23/2011 - 05:07 | 2006620 jaffa
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Thu, 01/05/2012 - 03:08 | 2034725 jaffa
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Tue, 03/27/2012 - 09:00 | 2293884 jaffa
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Mon, 01/16/2012 - 01:17 | 2067976 jaffa
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Wed, 03/28/2012 - 08:47 | 2296863 jaffa
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Mon, 02/06/2012 - 03:11 | 2129958 jaffa
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Tue, 12/27/2011 - 08:08 | 2013055 jaffa
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Fri, 10/14/2011 - 15:17 | 1774867 Newsboy
Newsboy's picture

Qui bono?


China is already developing Afghan mines.


China has good economic relations with Afghanistan, and is conveniently located next door.

Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:53 | 1864989 jaffa
jaffa's picture

The country’s vast untapped mineralogical resources are again emerging in the western media, seemingly underpinning the benefits of international security assistance Force troops staying the course and defeating the insurgency, after which these resources can be tapped, both providing the administration of afghan president hamid karzai with a source beyond drugs for reconstruction and western companies who develop the reserves a handsome profit. Thanks.
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Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:49 | 1773934 Ancona
Ancona's picture

So we've been dropping all those bombs to loosen up the soil for mining?


Brilliant strategy! Now, if we can only get those pesky Afghans out of our fucking way.......

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:04 | 1773963 Ag Tex
Ag Tex's picture

Time to free the shit out of them!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:31 | 1774149 porrannor
porrannor's picture

No.., we are loosening the soil to make it easier for China to mine it....

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:49 | 1773937 Deadpool
Deadpool's picture

only one resource that counts there: opium.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:54 | 1773941 HamyWanger
HamyWanger's picture

These lunatic, conspiracist attempts to make our Wars in the Middle East theater look like oil/minerals grabs are an insult to the sacrifice of thousands of young Americans, who dedicated their life to the preservation of freedom and equality around the world.

Give me a break. Who would be cynic enough to send thousands of people to their death and injuries for oil, and then say it was for liberty? Some men are evil, it's true, but I can't see anybody in our current government who would be able to do such things. 

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:55 | 1773975 jdelano
jdelano's picture

please tell me this is really good sarcasm?  

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:00 | 1773990 HamyWanger
HamyWanger's picture

No, it wasn't. I'm just sad and fed up to see a serious blog like Zerohedge joining the ranks of and Iamthewitness. 

No war in the world has ever been fought because of the military/industrial complex, but because of the beautiful, everlasting thirst for liberty of mankind. Nutjobs, crackers, goldbugs and hillbillies need to understand that. 

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:11 | 1774062 jdelano
jdelano's picture

alright.  you almost had me.  Definitely sarcasm.  kudos.  you're even more convincing than colbert.  

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:23 | 1774108 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

his name is your first clue

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:24 | 1774382 Pladizow
Pladizow's picture

Hamy Wanger is Tyler Durden - he writes these things to simply stir the pot and get a reaction.

Watch how fast Tyler responds!


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 16:27 | 1775136 Biosci
Biosci's picture

Wow, Hamy.  I'm impressed.  Only now does the true nature of your plan become clear.  Lay low for a few months, and let a whole new school of n00b sharks gather.  Then throw out some chum and watch the show.  Well done!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:11 | 1774064 pods
pods's picture

So you see no problem with the concept of forcing freedom on someone?  If you are making someone act in a particular way, it ain't freedom numbnuts.


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:13 | 1774068 Ponzi Unit
Ponzi Unit's picture

Hamy, you are deeply hypnotized.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:20 | 1774095 BrocilyBeef
BrocilyBeef's picture

Hamy "Just look at the dirty little hole I popped out of" Wanger.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:48 | 1774242 Max Hunter
Max Hunter's picture

 Zerohedge joining the ranks of and Iamthewitness. 

Well, only someone charged with battling the "truth" movement would even know about DBS.. You just showed your hand Hamy... You didn't just stumble across that website.. Don't try to take us for fools..

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:11 | 1774339 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

Boy are you misinformed!  

All wars are fought for resources.  None are fought to free the proletariat, although they may be convinced that that is the case since they must become the cannon fodder.

"Why of course the people don't want war. Why should some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don't want war: neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in any country."  --   Hermann Goering

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 16:28 | 1775143 Biosci
Biosci's picture

Boy are you misinformed!

Hee hee.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:56 | 1773981 Biosci
Biosci's picture

Goddamn you're inspring, Hamy.  You make me want to go vote!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:57 | 1773989 Scisco
Scisco's picture

Lookup the word psychopath and for followup, what professions the tend to choose.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:59 | 1773998 Deadpool
Deadpool's picture

Elizebeth Warren, is that you? (a flag for an avatar and rah-rah like this?? this ain't no MSNBC blog!)

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:00 | 1774004 Syrin
Syrin's picture

I like the fact that you see good in people, but I think this is a bit naive.   Those in Congress would whore out their mother and sister if it meant re-election.  Think of the worst person you know not in prison and realize that person is ten fold more ethical than most in Congress.   Recent elections have made some adjustments, but not enough to be significantly consequential.


Look at it this way.   Our executive branch and Depratment of JUSTICE gave GUNS to f***ing foreign criminals with the INTENT to remove our gun rights.   it has led to the deaths of hundreds of innocents.   This wasn't some accident.   it was an intentionally designed planned effort.   Never under estimate the potential evil of gov't officials.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:31 | 1774152 doomz78
doomz78's picture

I hope you're joking.  If not...put some vicks vapo-rub on your berries.  Open the freezer door.  Now insert your nuts in the freezer.  Wait 20 minutes.  Slap yourself in the face.  Walk over to a mirror.  And say,"I believe the propaganda that the mainstream media has served me all these years.  I am a moron for doing so."  Now go to your computer and say you are sorry to the great people of zero Hedge. 

Thank You.


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:15 | 1774357 Henry Chinaski
Henry Chinaski's picture

Hamy is the Phil Hendrie of ZH. 

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 17:04 | 1775306 Shirley Wilfahrt
Shirley Wilfahrt's picture

That brings a fucking tear to my eye.....<standing golf clap>

Fucking brilliant.....really....


My only advice for everyone this weekend.

Eat ass....Talk shit.


Cheers Bitchez!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 17:32 | 1775396 Rome is burining
Rome is burining's picture

Idiot! Go read Perkins "confessions of an economic hitman" and do a few freedom of information requests to uncle Sam.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:51 | 1773942 The Fonz...befo...
The Fonz...before shark jump's picture

haha what are the exploration costs going to be? can I go stake a mining claim and work the property? will I get shot at? is the infrastrucure there to accomodate mining? How many smelting facilites are there? etc etc what a laff what a joke this is.  trying to paint a picture of Afghanistan can one day become a minreal resource powerhouse is laughable.  The only commodity that the US govt is concerned about in afghanistan is the opium trade to help fund their BS CIA covert NWO activites thats fact after the Americans came in the opium trade has never been more robust....Plenty of gold in Colombia but few go in there to mine it because it is so fucked up...

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:27 | 1774126 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

also not sure how this latest "revelation" changes the fact that no empire has ever successfully taken down this country. Not enough overlords, too much terrain 

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:51 | 1773943 yabyum
yabyum's picture

The #1 export of Afghanistan has and will always be opium. Even their fine hsahish runs a distant second.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:51 | 1773946 bill1102inf
bill1102inf's picture

another shitbag country about to get rich because they have one or more natural resources un their ground????  Tell me again how america has any debt at all with the 200,000,134,143 resources we have here? Oh yes, thats right, the fed, politics, etc. 



Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:51 | 1773947 junkyardjack
junkyardjack's picture

US should just legalize drugs, that will be the backbone that gets Afghanistan on its feet

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:57 | 1773985 uno
uno's picture

the customs agents at the border would lose the majority of their income 'bribes' if drugs were legalized, not to mention cutting into the CIA's funding

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:38 | 1774453 zerozulu
zerozulu's picture

Best solution for the world problems.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:51 | 1773949 AngryGerman
AngryGerman's picture

chinese won't have a problem mining there. when the afghans make trouble, they just drop a plane on them.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 18:33 | 1775572 nasa
nasa's picture

or take them on one of their new luxury ships.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:51 | 1773953 uno
uno's picture

not to mention all the depleted uranium we can recover from our bombs

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:52 | 1773957 pasttense
pasttense's picture

An excellent opportunity for the Chinese to add to their rare earth monopoly!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:53 | 1773962 EscapeKey
EscapeKey's picture

more press releases. how quaint.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:53 | 1773965 Fred123
Fred123's picture

Yeah, we should let the mooslims develop their resources by themselves. Should have mines working in about 150 years....

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:54 | 1773966 adr
adr's picture

So while we are talking commodities has anyone else noticed the insane spike in the volume of commodity contracts traded. Look at Corn, Wheat, Rice, etc.

Up until March of 2011 daily volume was almost always under 1000 contracts traded. Many times much lower. Recently the volume has spiked higher than 25k contracts per day. The has been a massive increase in speculation and it corresponds to massive price increases.

Algos have definitely taken over the commodity trading space. This has to stop. Are the guards ever going to try and stop this prison riot before we are all killed?

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:55 | 1773972 Syrin
Syrin's picture

Actually I read an article baout this this week.   Someone in Congress has taken notice.   I guess that means they'll demand a kick back in order to allow the speculation to continuie with Congressional approval.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:59 | 1774001 adr
adr's picture

Wheat contracts have spiked to over 75k contracts this past month with the high prior to 2011 around 5000.

Corn now trades with an average over 100k contracts a day. Old averages were in the low thousands.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:26 | 1774127 Tuco Benedicto ...
Tuco Benedicto Pacifico Juan Maria Ramirez's picture

The foxes are guarding the hen house.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:53 | 1773967 falak pema
falak pema's picture

manifest destiny comes to Afghanistan...for some the new Cheyenne nation.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:54 | 1773969 Syrin
Syrin's picture

I imagine we'll let them sell their heroine/opium unmolested as a trade for taking their rare eath elements.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:58 | 1773979 user2011
user2011's picture

Well,  aren't US troop there to catch Osama ?   And why they are spending time investigating how much natural resource Afghan has ?


During the 80's,  Russian had arlready published the report on Trillion dollar worth of minerals in Afghan.  And now  it is our turn to harvest the natural wealthy "on behalf of" the afghan ?


More I look at it,  more I believe the 911 conspiracies.   We have taken two countries Afghan and Iraq all because of the 911.    One for the minerals and another for the oil.

And then we had just manufacture another incident, the assasination of Saudi diplomate.    Iran, here we come.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:57 | 1773984 mcarthur
mcarthur's picture

What bozo wrote this crap?  $100,000/t for unprocessed ore?  1,500,000 t of copper per year?

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:59 | 1773999 Börjesson
Börjesson's picture

It would make more sense if Rare Earth Elements were abbreviated REE rather than RRE. But then again, why should that make sense when nothing else does...

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 11:59 | 1774000 dcb
dcb's picture

any excuse for the military industrail complex to stay, plus now another muslim country with mineral wealth to exploit. fuck the script is always the same.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:01 | 1774016 JustObserving
JustObserving's picture

Wall Street is War Street - that's the new slogan.  From the mouth of babes .... and protestors

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:02 | 1774018 Clint Liquor
Clint Liquor's picture

The tragedy of Empires, reaching farther and farther outside of their borders to acquire the resources necessary to sustain their obese citizens. It requires ever increasing Military to protect their resources from the indigenous population and inevitably bankrupts the Empire. Neo-cons call it 'protecting our strategic interest'.

Welcome to the decaying Empire of the United States.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:04 | 1774026 Deadpool
Deadpool's picture

better to be a fat hog than bacon.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:18 | 1774361 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

Bacon comes from fat hogs.  That, and some other delicious cuts, are all fat hogs are good for.  Very few fat hogs die of old age.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:10 | 1774052 dick cheneys ghost
dick cheneys ghost's picture

Good post.......we have 400 Military bases in afghanistan mostly protecting TAPI(pipeline)..........I dont recall any afghani's on the 9/11 planes that "attacked" the US........oh well........gotta recycle those petro dollars........

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:24 | 1774113 Tuco Benedicto ...
Tuco Benedicto Pacifico Juan Maria Ramirez's picture

Empires don't care two shits about their citizens.  Is Obama a neo-con as I seem to remember him expanding our wars!?  The right left paradigm is a false one that should not be fallen for.  Different puppets on the same stage, but that said, yes, our empire is decaying.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:02 | 1774021 Spigot
Spigot's picture

IMO you will find that any place that has been over run and occupied by western powers (since about 1850) either is "mineral rich" or a strategic geographic location which controls access to those "mineral riches". But this is not restricted to "western" powers as China so adequately demonstrates by its choke hold over Mongolia. Face it, if you have something someone else wants then they will find a way to get it from you, whether by "predatory loans" or military force. The boys'n'girls at the top do not play fair and square, they just arrange the pcs on their game boards. BTW - You are the pcs.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:06 | 1774028 digalert
digalert's picture

Cool, since our soldiers are now planting, growing, harvesting, transporting Opium for the Afghan economy. Might as well put our soldiers to work on REE mining while were there.

Didn't I hear somewhere that our "rapid troop withdraw" from Afghanistan is now set for 2020?


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:10 | 1774053 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

The "rapid troop withdraw" has been pushed to the year 2200. However, that may be overly optimistic and may need to be pushed further out to reflect the current realities.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:21 | 1774098 Tuco Benedicto ...
Tuco Benedicto Pacifico Juan Maria Ramirez's picture

Exactly right.  This is a little head fake the demons throw out on occasion for the ignorant establishment media watchers.  Poppy seed production up 90% since we invaded in 2001 good for a cool $500,000,000,000.00 per year.  We had 40,000 troops massed on Afghan border on 9/10/01.  Just coincidental:)

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:10 | 1774050 Segestan
Segestan's picture

Silly, this resource news, has been known since at least the 50's . Hell they figured out how to make Gold from sea water in the 50's.. atomic fusion. So tell me, what does any of this great discovery that War is supposedly being fought over have to do the real world of ........ backwards, stupid people!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:13 | 1774067 alien-IQ
alien-IQ's picture

Can we just admit that all we are doing is looting other nations and just stop this ridiculous pretense of "spreading democracy".

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:19 | 1774093 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Can we just admit that all we are doing is looting other nations and just stop this ridiculous pretense of "spreading democracy".

US citizens are duplicitous by nature and their nature is eternal.

It would require that US citizens relinquish their nature which would mean that their nature is not eternal.

So no, US citizens will never admit that they are looting other nations, at least as long as stuff remains to be looted.

Once it is over, yep, you might see US citizens recognize they looted. No longer useful to deny.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:28 | 1774404 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

It's an English thing.  Americans are just tools of The Empire.

The sun never sets on the British Empire (unfortunately).   Americans making the world free for The Family to keep stealing the planet's resources.  It's a dirty job, but better that Yanks (and a few Aussies and Canucks) do it than an outnumbered British military (now that they don't have those unlimited cannon fodder resources in India and Africa to recruit from).

Sun, 10/16/2011 - 14:21 | 1779018 BigJim
BigJim's picture

LOL. Most of the people who post on ZH are US citizens, and we're frequently condemning the looting.

BTW - How can anyone's nature be 'eternal' if they don't live forever?

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:17 | 1774083 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Stability is relative and depends on the viewer PoV.

What is the US interested in? Stability in the flow of wealth extraction out of Iraq.

Many examples around the world under the US world order shows that it is possible to establish and maintain a steady outflow of wealth from countries that are sunk into turmoil.

Afghanistan might be raging with civil war while the flow of their wealth is shipped steadily and undisturbed out of their country.

No connection between the welfare of the local population and the possibility to extract wealth.

As to corruption in the Aghanistan government, well, the US should be concerned first, even before the locals as they are claiming everywhere they are installing democracy, republicanism and US citizenism.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:33 | 1774423 zerozulu
zerozulu's picture

America is like a drug addict, short of his dose, cannot make wise judgment.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:18 | 1774088 PaperBear
PaperBear's picture

Bulletin by TVZNETonline
Bulletin by TVZNETonline

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:19 | 1774090 lineskis
lineskis's picture

REEs, not RREs god dammit! You had the punch line right Rare Earth Elements!

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:23 | 1774110 nah
nah's picture

afghanistans also got cheap labor

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:33 | 1774142 Monedas
Monedas's picture

The most prosperous nations on Earth have a common benefactor....the US Military ! Apparently, our blessed presence is good medicine for some really sick, Socialist shit holes ! China is a US/English speaking world they had a culture to build on ! Pax Americana isn't over just yet, Socialist Scum ! Monedas 2011 Kill the Jews and flood your countries with Muslims was pure genius of the National Socialists ! Hahahahaha !

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:31 | 1774151 thewhitelion
thewhitelion's picture

I hear that many areas are rich in depleted uranium too.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:36 | 1774182 Winston Smith 2009
Winston Smith 2009's picture

Pure BS attempt to make Afghanistan worth fighting over.  The truth:

Rare Earth Elements in U.S. Not So Rare
Significant Deposits Found in 14 States
Released: 11/17/2010 12:27:49 PM

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:38 | 1774454 FeralSerf
FeralSerf's picture

It's absolutely imperative that The Empire gets control of significant deposits of critical resources even if It doesn't have any plan or need (or strategic ability) to exploit them.  The control keeps someone else from selling those resources in competition with The Family.

BP's control (and continued attempts at control of ANWR) of North Slope oil is a classic example of this principle.  They already control Gull Island oil and clearly have no intention of producing oil there and have been relatively successful at keeping the existence of that large resource quiet.  BP clearly intends to reclaim control of "their" Iranian resources as soon as they can convince their American colonials to do the job.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 12:45 | 1774232 TradingTroll
TradingTroll's picture

Article is only half baked. Did the writer look at a map of Afghanistan. Its land locked, any resources must be shipped through Pakistan or Iran. So how about them apples? The existing border crossings intermittently close, and they kind of hate each other, not a great situation for shipping ore, and roads and ports would need to be built to get the ore out


Forget rare earths, the copper and iron are the crown jewels, but major issues exist

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:00 | 1774288 Fancy Tickle
Fancy Tickle's picture

Kind of makes you yearn for the good old days when countries would just take what resources they found to help pay for the cost of being there.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:08 | 1774311 Monedas
Monedas's picture

If these poor shit wad states didn't have natural resources, where the fluke would they be ? Thank God for Capitalists who can make good use of them ! Monedas 2011 The rarest element of all is CCS....Capitalist Common Sense !

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 14:19 | 1774611 Clint Liquor
Clint Liquor's picture

Of course, the capitalist is necessary for the development of resources, but he should also be responsible for protecting his investment. The Empire crumbles when the Capitalist requires his Government to protect his interests in foreign lands.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 16:35 | 1775185 fastishplastic
fastishplastic's picture

what the hell are you talking about? if this is anywhere near a semi-serious post i have just one thing to say. my friends, and your friends are dying for the god-given capitalism and its nonsense that you are thankful for. i don't know where afghanistan would be if no one ever discovered their reserves, but i do our capitalists haven't helped.  

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 16:54 | 1775271 Clint Liquor
Clint Liquor's picture

You don't understand because you have only experienced crony-capitalism, where the US Military provides 'security' to protect private interests.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:25 | 1774363 zerozulu
zerozulu's picture

Afghan adventure could have been a complete success but America made few mistakes.

1. America Threatened Pakistan to level her to the Stone Age.

2. Involved India in this operation and took India’s advice. India is no one’s friend and will never be. In soviet era, they were in bed with USSR and after soviet collapse, jumped in to the US boat.

3. US started meddlinginside Pakistan’s internal politics, tried to control Pakistan army through corrupt and criminal Pakistani politicians.  

4. US tried to bypass Pakistan army while making key strategically regional decisions. Remember Pakistan army is the only and highly organized institution in Pakistan.

5.  US forget how deep and capable Pakistan’s ISI is. They are deep rooted in afghan Jirga culture since the soviet invasion.

6. Pakistan’s ISI has decided they will not let US get out of Afghanistan until US is economically collapsed.

7. America misunderstood afghan and Pakistan culture.


A seven years old girl can take a horse to the river but ten strong men cannot force him to drink.


Here is one link I found yesterday and posted.


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:25 | 1774391 Bansters-in-my-...
Bansters-in-my- feces's picture

Fuck Off TammyWanger,you little fucking fagott.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 13:40 | 1774462 Tramp Stamper
Tramp Stamper's picture

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 14:17 | 1774601 JohnFrodo
JohnFrodo's picture

Never forget the strong posibilty of finding Yeti, and where there is Yeti your sure to find Unicorns. By Christmas we will be using drones to find Unicorns.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 14:25 | 1774634 earleflorida
earleflorida's picture

leave it to the military? -

gen. barry mc'caffrey nominated "drug czar" by slick willy 1996-2001_-

guess what? drug use skyrocketed - surprise, surprise -

ps.  anyone here ever noticed when the msm started referring to the various dept. heads/ administration chiefs/ head honcho's as czar's - post nixon, and decline of the ussr,... anyone -

why is that? -

chuckle/ thought for the day___  ree/ rem's are only rare when they have already been breached by the alchemist mind,... ?

thankyou tyler 

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 15:30 | 1774907 Scalaris
Scalaris's picture

Are they rarer than Saddam's WMDs?

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 16:44 | 1775227 Majere
Majere's picture

Things to note in the HREE area;

China halting three mines by eo11:

Read here for quick easy info on REE:

Much more in depth REE:

China and the monopoly:

A few years ago the US government asked that a global study be done and here is the report:  The Principal Rare Earth Elements Deposits of the United States—A Summary of Domestic Deposits and a Global Perspective:

Page 35 of the previous study shows only one major mine that already has the infrestructure in place - Bokan Mnt in Alaska.  This is a key note to pay attention to for later.  (Sen. Murkowski (R-AK) is pushing VERY hard to get more jobs created in Alaska btw)  United States Bureau of Mines (USBM) - has many studies going back to the 50's with drill samples and findings of many locations in the US, and Moly Corp is NOT a major player for the HREE's that are the real critical's. 

At Bokan already:
All the structure is already there for roads and water way with immediate deep water (and the only N. American REE deposit on the Pacific Rim). It’s the most southerly stop on the Alaska Marine Highway, one of the most used shipping road lanes in the West. It’s also located on the south Alaska Panhandle, and not far from Prince Rupert...which is one of the largest container ports and rail heads in the western US. This place is set to go in the very near future....Many studies are done with new drill sites and findings on UCORE's website.  This is important to many countries to not keep the monopoly with China, and we all know how much "Made in USA" means to the American poplulation right now, including creating jobs. 

Ucore is the junior company at Bokan and they received priority permiting:

Oh so lets put all of this under the nation security now, because we know we can do whatever we want with that:

Key points in the pdf:

"Economic and National security risks"
"rare earth magnets (used in smart bombs)"
"China will use its leverage over these materials as a weapon."

And of course OBUMA keeps talking about winning the future.  Creating jobs in the industries that carried America in years past like construction and mining.  Investing in our future of clean energy and being more efficient with creating and keeping jobs in the US.

Now back to Afgan area - Stans Energy is the next closest to being able to start production.  They are located in Kyrgyzstan.  This was the sole source mine of LREE/HREE for the former USSR, and they have the processing equipment and still many of the original scientists/miners/roadways/etc still in place.  Looking at a map of the area, it would be much faster to go straight south to a shipping area than across roads.  Oh...look at that, Afgan and then into India where Enron put up infrustructure - how nice of them...errr the tax payers.  Check out the Adv board and their connections.  One of them was on the USBM before it was closed down, and is alos on the board for Stans Energy. 

It's very important to note that not all mines nor LREE/HREE's are equal. Ranked in order of risk
to supply by Technology Metals Research using the US DOE’s report and supply/demand )

1. Dysprosium
2. Yttrium
3. Terbium
4. Europium
5. Neodymium

Another report for top five mines outside of China:

Just another puzzle being put together.  Bokan will be up and going before any others in the US.  As of right now there isn't anyone even close.  Stans Energy could be back up and running quicker than anyone as an open pit mine was already there as well as the rails/roads.  There are other juniors in play, but really the only other one I see being able to help put soem on the market very soon would be Lynas - but nowhere near what is needed. 

My $0.02 worth

~Home is the denial of reality.  It is the carrot dangled before the sheeple to keep them plodding along in a vain attempt to reach it.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 17:56 | 1775482 Stevious
Stevious's picture


Even high-grade Rare Earth ore rarely has more than 2% rare earth oxides.  That's a max of 40lbs/ton.

The valuable Heavy Rare Earth Elements usually are a tiny fraction of the total REE.  The light REE must be separated first to get the HREE's like dysprosium, terbium and yttrium.  It can take up to 1000 ion exchange and or solvent extraction processes to separate them.

$100,000/ton--prepostorous!  Not even REE concentrates which brings the REE component to about 10% will net that value.

What a joke.


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 19:09 | 1775665 Hobbleknee
Hobbleknee's picture

I didn't know opium was a rare earth element.

Fri, 10/14/2011 - 23:22 | 1776211 Bartanist
Bartanist's picture


Fri, 10/14/2011 - 23:20 | 1776212 Bartanist
Bartanist's picture

... and then the Soros, Rockefeller and other monopolistic oligarch funded GSEs will come out in force and have all of the minerals declared conflict minerals that are illegal to possess, so as to maintain oligarch control of supply... now a part of Dodd f'n Frank.

Look what they did to Sierra Leone and the DRC. Diamonds that can be scooped up in the mud and one of the largest and most easily accessible area of gold, tantalum, tin and other metals in the world ... and the people live in absolute poverty.

Sat, 10/15/2011 - 14:48 | 1777285 Iwanttoknow
Iwanttoknow's picture

Pakistani Oligarchs really loved USA.The second prime minister,after receiving an invitation from the then Soviet Union,begged the US ambassador to arange an invitation to washington.Soviets,natually loved it.If anyone remembers the U2 crisis9i was 2 yrs old),U2 took of from Badber,near peshawar,Pakistan.That led to the cancellation of the historical Eisenhower-kruschev summit that was to take place in Paris.For some one really interested,read Col. Flether Prouty.USSR(Kruschev put a red circle on peshawar on amap) threated a nuclear srike at pakistan.The point Col.prouty makes(which I;ve checked ) that there was to be no military overflights over USSR,not to jeopardize the summit.the U2 flight was in direct violation of Ike's order.Also,the media carried the bogus story that the U2 was brought down by Soviet SAM.U2 supposedly developed engine trouble and had to make aforced landing near verdlovosk,now Yeketerinburg.Francis Gary powers was dumfouded when the sovits were able to finf ID papers on him.U2 pilots never carried ID papers.He was exchanged for a soviet spy(Klaus Fuchs?).While flying a chpper for a LA local TV station,the chopper crashed.The same U2 also flew out of a very secrect base in japan,where Oswald was statione.

Mon, 02/13/2012 - 01:32 | 2152649 q5251355
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Tue, 03/20/2012 - 01:27 | 2272300 jaffa
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The story takes place in Algeria and begins with two men climbing a rocky slope. One of them, the gendarme Balducci, is on horseback and the other, an Arab prisoner, is on foot. At the summit of the hill, a school teacher named Daru watches them climb their way up. There are no students at the school at this time because they stayed home during the blizzard. Thanks.
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Mon, 04/09/2012 - 02:58 | 2327343 carlhenson
carlhenson's picture

Really? I thought the structure of any mineral is constant. life insurance

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